Taj employee survives attack, loses father

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Thane, Nov 30 (UNI) Twenty-three-year-old Florence Martis hardly knew that even after surving the worst ever terror attack on the Taj Mahal hotel, a rude shock still awaited her back home.

Florence, an employee with the Taj Mahal hotel and a resident of Wagle estate in Thane, lost her 50-year-old father, who was also an employee there, in the same attack.

While Florence works as a receptionist in the hotel, her father was a head steward and both of them were stranded in the hotel along with several other employees and people since Wednesday night after terrorists seiged the hotel.

Both the father and the daughter were holed up on the ground and second floor respectively on that fateful night.

According to family sources, on the intervening night of November 26 and 27 at around 0130 hrs, Florence contacted her brother Flayd and informed him that she was held up in a room on the second floor of the hotel.

Martis also spoke to his wife Precil at around 0530 hours on Thursday.

Later, in the morning Florence managed to escape with some other staff members and reached home only to know that her father was killed by terrorists in the hotel.

Ironically, Martis had contacted his daughter minutes before his tragic end and had told her not to lose hope and courage.

''I told my Dad that I was hungry and he promised to get me something to eat, I think terrorists targetted him while he was getting me some food,'' Florence sobbed.

Incidentally, it was Martis' wedding anniversary that day.

UNI XR LY SK KP1145

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